Friday, November 13, 2009

Bleak and Gray...

Sometimes you don't get what you expect. Bob and I are on a nice South Carolina Beach Vacation. Well, I am on vacation, Bob is attending a conference. The conference is at Kiawah Island, which is a lovely privately owned island with expensive beach homes, lots of golf courses and a plethora of tourist accommodations.

We stayed in a beach townhouse complete with a full kitchen, screened in porch, separate bedroom and a washer and dryer.

I had visions of reading my Christopher Fowler mystery on the beach dressed in my capris and wearing my sunglasses. But, the recent Gulf hurricane kind of ruined all that. It has been cold and rainy the whole time we have been here. I mean, I have had to put my hoody and LL Bean parka on to stay warm as I poked around some little beach shops yesterday.

The whole time here I had not seen the beach, so this morning, I bundled up and decided to hunt down the beach and see what I was missing.

I followed the boardwalk through the highly vegetated dunes and was delighted to see several birds flitting around enjoying the early morning.

Everything was so gray. The steel gray sky met the angry gray ocean as it ran up to the drab gray beach. I was the only one out there in this area of the beach and it seemed rather lonely and forbidding.

As I walked down the beach I noticed piles of shells, washed ashore during high tide. They were so interesting and unique because most of the shells were intact, two halves still joined.

It brought back childhood memories of happy beach days when we would hunt and hunt for a couple of good shells.

I wish I had had a child with me because we could have picked up a grocery bag full of the lovely shells.

Along with the shells there were horseshoe crab exoskeletons partially buried in the hard-packed, cold sand.

There we also some unidentifiable "sea worms" or coral or something that were intriguing.

As I walked along I saw a lone fisherman, silhouetted against the bleak seascape.

Further down I saw a family of sand pipers scurrying around trying to find a tasty low-tide breakfast.

I also came upon a middle age lady with her little grandson who was dressed in a snow suit! The little guy was happily digging in the sand while grandma sipped on a hot coffee, the steam rising around the cup that was clenched in her icy hands.

Actually, it was a wonderful walk. I was thinking how I had been cursing the darkness before I went out. I felt sorry for myself that my dream beach vacation wasn't what I had imagined.

But then, I realized that I had this big beautiful beach almost to myself and it was incredible.

I have to think that happens a lot in life. We are expecting one thing, and we forget to appreciate and embrace the unexpected.

We probably miss a lot that way.

My beach vacation was not what I expected, or what I would have ordered, but I got to see the beach in a way I had not experienced it before.

God's majesty is incredible!
Take care,

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